AbSciCon Session: Life in the Anthropocene

This year at AbSciCon I will be convening a poster session titled “Life in the Anthropocene: The Future of Earth’s Biosphere.” Understanding the future of civilization is one of the goals of astrobiology research, and I welcome a broad range of interdisciplinary perspectives to generate lively discussion at this session.

Life in the Anthropocene: The Future of Earth’s Biosphere

Organizer: Jacob Haqq-Misra (Blue Marble Space Institute of Science)

Summary: The distant future of Earth’s biosphere will be shaped by the balance among factors such as orbital variations in solar insolation, cycles in glacial coverage, the carbonate-silicate cycle, and the resonating effects of anthropogenic climate change. Even longer geologic timescales will force the climate to adapt to a steadily brightening sun by drawing down atmospheric carbon dioxide until habitable conditions no longer remain. This poster session invites contributions that consider potential threats or challenges to the future of civilization, life, and climate from factors that will affect the Earth system over the next 100,000 to million years or longer.


Feel free to contact me if you have any questions regarding the suitability of your abstract for this session, and please share this session information with any of your interested colleagues.

Planetary Messenger

At long last my philosophical novel is complete! A journey through space, time, and dreams, Planetary Messenger explores the social, scientific, and spiritual consequences of discovering another planet in the galaxy just like our Earth. I began this project as a NaNoWriMo entry in 2007 and continued editing and revising for a year and a half.

From the back cover:

Since the dawn of humanity we have gazed at the stars to ponder our existence. To the naked eye the skies are dark and lifeless, but what if, through a glass, we looked to the heavens and saw our mirror image, a twin Earth from afar? If we found our uniqueness shattered in the vast cosmic arena, then what, if anything, could we still hold sacred?

Planetary Messenger is now available either directly from Createspace or through Amazon. Thanks to all of you who have been part of my life so far and helped make this possible. Happy reading!

No GCC This Year

Last year I presented a poster on early Earth climate at the Graduate Climate Conference in Seattle. This year my abstract titled “Gaia Through Time: The Coevolution of Life and Climate” was accepted for the poster session. Although I’d like to reconnect with the folks I met last year, I can’t justify the time (or money) for a weekend in Seattle to present a poster. So no GCC for me this year.

On the flipside, I’m now available for Exploration Day on April 18 at the Bryce Jordan Center. I’ll have my “Walk Through Earth’s History” timeline to take kids (and adults) on a 13.7 meter journey through the 13.7 billion years of our planet’s story.

This also means I’m free to play with Mysterytrain that weekend at the Penn State Eco-Action Earth Day celebration on the HUB Lawn. Not sure what time we’re playing yet, but we’re looking forward to playing for the Eco-Action crowd!